: an internationally recognized signal of distress in radio code ‧ ‧ ‧ - - - ‧ ‧ ‧ used especially by ships calling for help
: a call or request for help or rescue

Examples of SOS in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web On Tuesday, Haiti’s National Library, Bibliothèque Nationale, which holds rare historical books and manuscripts, issued an SOS as armed gunmen surrounded the building for a second day. Jacqueline Charles, Miami Herald, 2 Apr. 2024 March 28, 2024 ON THIS WEEK’S episode of Dinner SOS, test kitchen director and host Chris Morocco is joined by senior test kitchen editor Shilpa Uskokovic to help callers Izzy and Nina find a foolproof baking project. The Bon Appétit Staff & Contributors, Bon Appétit, 28 Mar. 2024 The hiker used his phone’s SOS feature to reach out to satellites that then routed the call through Douglas County Sheriff’s Office dispatch, which reached out to search and rescue, Arnett told 9News. Brooke Baitinger, Idaho Statesman, 26 Mar. 2024 Cody Johnson, Jelly Roll, Kelsea Ballerini and Lainey Wilson Lead 2024 CMT Awards Nominations The award is inspired by June Carter Cash, who worked for several charities, such as SOS Children's Villages in Austria, throughout her life. Jack Irvin, Peoplemag, 25 Mar. 2024 Noah Kahan’s Stick Season dips 2-3 (48,000; down 9%), Ye and Ty Dolla $ign’s chart-topping Vultures 1 falls 3-4 (45,000; down 14%) and SZA’s former No. 1 SOS descends 4-5 (nearly 45,000; down 3%). Keith Caulfield, Billboard, 17 Mar. 2024 The song is expected to appear on Lana, a possible deluxe edition of SZA’s 2022 album, SOS. Trevor Anderson, Billboard, 6 Mar. 2024 On February 10 this year, the decomposing remains of six-year-old Hind Rajab were found, the shattering end to a search that began after her SOS call was broadcast by the Palestine Red Crescent. Hazlitt, 6 Mar. 2024 But those are not roles delegated to the SOS, as Megan Wolfe, the WEC’s administrator said in an April 28, 2023 report from the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. Laura Schulte, Journal Sentinel, 1 Mar. 2024

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'SOS.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

First Known Use

1910, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Time Traveler
The first known use of SOS was in 1910

Dictionary Entries Near SOS

Cite this Entry

“SOS.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/SOS. Accessed 13 Apr. 2024.

Kids Definition


ˌes-(ˌ)ō-ˈes How to pronounce SOS (audio)
: an international radio code distress signal used by ships and aircraft calling for help
: a call for help

Medical Definition


if occasion require; if necessary
used in writing prescriptions

Latin si opus sit

More from Merriam-Webster on SOS

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